Are You Depressed?

If you feel depressed, it’s best to do something about it. Depression doesn’t just go away on its own.

  1. Exercise : Take a 15 to 30-minute brisk walk every day or dance, jog, or bike if you prefer. People who are depressed may not feel much like being active. But make yourself do it anyway (ask a friend to exercise with you if you need to be motivated). Once you get in the exercise habit, it won’t take long to notice a difference in your mood.
    In addition to getting aerobic exercise, some yoga poses can help relieve feelings of depression.Two other aspects of yoga  breathing exercises and meditation  can also help people with depression to feel better.
  2. Nurture yourself with good nutrition : Depression can affect appetite. One person may not feel like eating at all, but another might overeat. If depression has affected your eating, you’ll need to be extra mindful of getting the right nourishment. Proper nutrition can influence a person’s mood and energy. So eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and get regular meals (even if you don’t feel hungry, try to eat something light, like a piece of fruit, to keep you going).
  3. Express yourself : With depression, a person’s creativity and sense of fun may seem blocked. Exercise your imagination (painting, drawing, doodling, sewing, writing, dancing, composing music, etc.) and you not only get those creative juices flowing, you also loosen up some positive emotions. Take time to play with a friend or a pet, or do something fun for yourself. Find something to laugh about a funny movie, perhaps. Laughter helps lighten your mood.
  4. Try to notice good things : Depression affects a person’s thoughts, making everything seem dismal, negative, and hopeless. If depression make you noticing only the negative, make an effort to notice the good things in life. Try to notice one thing, then try to think of one more. Consider your strengths, gifts, or blessings. Most of all, don’t forget to be patient with yourself. Depression takes time to heal.
  5. Speak up for yourself : You may be hesitant to speak out when the depression in your life upsets you or lets you down. However, honest communication will actually help to be out of the depression. If you’re suffering in silence and letting resentment build, your loved one will pick up on these negative emotions and feel even worse. Gently talk about how you’re feeling before pent-up emotions make it too hard to communicate with sensitivity.
  6. Stay on track with your own life : While some changes in your daily routine may be unavoidable while caring for your friend or relative, do your best to keep appointments and plans with friends.
  7. Seek support : Joining a support group, talking to a counselor, or confiding in a trusted friend will help you get through this tough time. Instead focus on your emotions and what you are feeling, make sure you can be totally honest with the person you turn to no judging your emotions!
  8. Try not to isolate yourself : When you’re depressed, you may not feel like seeing anybody or doing anything. Just getting out of bed in the morning can be difficult, but isolating yourself only makes depression worse. Make it a point to stay social, even if that’s the last thing you want to do. As you get out into the world, you may find yourself feeling better. Spend time with friends, especially those who are active, upbeat, and make you feel good about yourself. It’s also a good idea to limit the time you spend playing video games or surfing online.
  9. Avoid alcohol and drugs : You may be tempted to drink or use drugs in an effort to escape from your feelings and get a “mood boost,” even if just for a short time. However, substance use can not only make depression worse, but can cause you to become depressed in the first place. Alcohol and drug use can also increase suicidal feelings. In short, drinking and taking drugs will make you feel worse not better in the long run. If you’re addicted to alcohol or drugs, seek help. You will need special treatment for your substance problem on top of whatever treatment you’re receiving for your depression.
  10. Ask for help if you’re stressed : Stress and worry can take a big toll, even leading to depression. If you’re dealing with relationship, friendship, or family problems, talk to an adult your trust. Likewise, if you have a health concern you feel you can’t talk to your parents about such as a pregnancy scare or drug problem seek medical attention at a clinic or see a doctor. A health professional can help you approach your parents (if that is required) and guide you toward appropriate treatment. Your school may have a counselor you can go to for help, or you may want to ask your parents to make an appointment for you to see a therapist.
  11. Seek out a depression specialist : If there are no health problems that are causing the teenager’s depression, ask your doctor to refer you to a psychologist or psychiatrist who specializes in children and adolescents. Depression in teens can be tricky, particularly when it comes to treatment options such as medication. A mental health professional with advanced training and a strong background treating adolescents is the best bet for the teenager’s best care.
  12. Don’t rely on medication alone : To the guardians, expect a discussion with the specialist you’ve chosen about treatment possibilities for your son or daughter. There are a number of treatment options for depression in teenagers, including one-on-one talk therapy, group or family therapy, and medication. Talk therapy is often a good initial treatment for mild to moderate cases of depression. However, antidepressants should only be used as part of a broader treatment plan.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             by Tanvir Hasan Taraque                                                                                        

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